Avengers: Endgame has given us a huge "sigh of relief" when Cap lifted Mjölnir.

But as we know from Thor: Ragnarok Mjölnir was just a way for Thor to channel his power of lightning. I repeat "THOR's" power, because he is the god of lightning.

So how did Captain America generate lightning bolts to fight Thanos in the endgame?

EDIT: I don't know why people are marking this as a duplicate of How did Captain America manage to do this? These are two different questions at their core. Here I am not questioning Captain America's worthiness for lifting Mjölnir, instead, the focus is on the power of generating bolts of lightning which are shown in the movie.

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    Asked and answered on SFF (and I think I saw a similar question here but gotta go!)
    – Jenayah
    Commented Apr 29, 2019 at 13:55
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    @Paulie_D Not a duplicate of linked question for sure. Although it is of course answered on SFF as Jenayah's link.
    – RC0993
    Commented Apr 29, 2019 at 15:13
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    Off topic but Captain America is much (much) better at using Mjölnir than Thor. Seriously, he made Thor's hammer work look like child's play compared to the ridiculous combos he was pulling off with the hammer and shield, even Thanos was caught off-guard.
    – Malekai
    Commented Apr 29, 2019 at 18:03
  • @LogicalBranch That is true.
    – zero-one
    Commented Apr 30, 2019 at 5:55
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    @Bergi No it is not a duplicate of that. Please check.
    – zero-one
    Commented Apr 30, 2019 at 9:21

2 Answers 2


Whoever is worthy can possess the power of Thor. From the first Thor movie:

Whosoever holds this hammer, if he be worthy, shall possess the power of Thor.

So, since Cap is worthy, he possesses all the powers of Thor.

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    Yeah, the way I interpreted it is Odin stripped Thor of his powers, imbued Mjolnir with them in Thor 1. Then when it was destroyed in Thor 3, they returned to him. But since they brought Mjolnir forward from the past, there were two copies of Thor's powers in the final fight, one in Thor and one in Cap. Commented Apr 29, 2019 at 16:26
  • @AzorAhai .. fantastic add to the answer!
    – MovieMe
    Commented May 8, 2019 at 13:03
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    I don't think so @AzorAhai, in Thor Ragnarok, Odin says to Thor in the dream sequence that It was to help him control and channel his powers, Mjolnir was never his source of strength. This was the exact dialogue "Are you Thor the god of hammers? That hammer was to help you control your power; to focus it. It was never your source of strength."
    – Encrypter
    Commented Aug 26, 2019 at 6:16

Niffler is correct, Thor is powerful but the hammer also has power in itself and can only be wielded by someone who it considers worthy.

In addition to this though there is a scene from one of the previous Avenger movies where a number of the Avengers try to move the hammer and all fail much to Thor's amusement...with one exception.

Captain America doesn't immediately want to try and move the hammer and when eventually pressured into it he puts his hand on the handle and it moves slightly. Thor notices this and reacts but then the Captain pretends to be unable to move the hammer and everything continues as before.

This also feeds into Thor's line where he says "I knew it!" when he sees the Captain wielding the hammer. Thor has suspected ever since that moment that Captain America secretly had the ability to use Mjolnir.

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    I don't think that the earlier incident when everyone was trying to move the hammer, Captain "pretended" to not be able to move it. I think he wasn't worthy of it at that moment
    – RC0993
    Commented Apr 29, 2019 at 15:10
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    @RC0993 Go watch it again. The hammer moved and he moved it back and then claimed not to be able to move it.
    – Tim B
    Commented Apr 29, 2019 at 16:00
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    “Is he not? Are we sure?” Whedon responded, a hint of teasing in his voice. “Did he fail? Or did he stop?”
    – Tim B
    Commented Apr 29, 2019 at 16:02
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    @RC0993 Plenty of point, he's a good guy and didn't want to embarrass Thor when he realized he could move it. He would definitely have felt that initial movement and if he wanted bragging rights could have claimed that movement for it. Instead he realized it, and Thor saw it, and then he saved Thor's face by not showing him up. Part of the reason he was worthy in the first place! All of which is supported that in End Game he knew he could lift the hammer and in fact went and did so and Thor's shout of "I knew it!" when he sees Cap doing so.
    – Tim B
    Commented Apr 29, 2019 at 16:08
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    @AnthonyGrist Watch this clip youtu.be/o3bhQwY0KCY?t=77 he grasps the hammer, he pulls - it moves slightly and Thor sees it move. He then hesitates, someone says "come on cap", then he pretends to pull but you can see he isn't really trying. The grip is loose and he never actually puts his legs or back into it.
    – Tim B
    Commented Apr 30, 2019 at 1:12

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